If you feel like life’s a drag and one vanilla moment after the next, then perhaps it’s time to create your avatar.
What’s an Avatar?
An avatar is a self-created way of being in this world in a more powerful way. My current avatar, the 11th Warrior, is a vehicle through which I express my art, my most loving beliefs, my highest aspirations, and my greatest passions. In other words, he’s the most bad-ass version of myself. Like the 11th Warrior, an avatar can be a character representation of your best qualities, talents and dreams. However, the earthly identity you’re in right now, whether it’s your highest expression or not, is also an avatar. It’s the vessel through which you’re expressing yourself.
How to Supercharge your Avatar
No matter where you are in your avatar-creating journey, here’s the spinach every avatar needs to Popeye through life’s blah moments…
It’s not as depleting as you’d think. Giving to others is like pumping iron to grow your strength.
When Spiderman or Wonder Woman saves the day, do you really think it’s purely out of sacrificial virtue? They’re pumping their iron!
Think about it. When a superhero rescues civilians in distress they:
1) Power up their superhero status every time they do it. (If you want be a superhero, you gotta go superheroing at least occasionally.)
2) Build collective chi behind their identity when they’re acknowledged for their good deeds.
3) Feel powerful by actively using their powers for good.
4) Feel even more dope after seeing the positive impact they’ve made.
Sure, the damsel (or mansel?) in distress benefits greatly. But we’re kidding ourselves if we believe that there’s only one person on the receiving end of kindness.
When you express kindness towards someone, you feel that kindness in your body too. When you smile genuinely at another, you feel that smile within you too. The energy you put out is simultaneously the emotional reality you’re generating within yourself. In other words, the power you share magnifies the power you own.
But don’t be fooled by the sexy allure of superheroing your way around. Power comes in many guises.
Be the “Victim” Sometimes
Gasp. Be a victim?!
Hear me out for a second. In today’s world, we tend to value strength over vulnerability. We value being a tiger over a wee lamb. I’ve fallen prey to this myself, especially in the ego-driven, professional wrestling world where my desire to make it big sometimes caused hurt to others.
I’ve always admired my good friend Jimmy who didn’t mind when he had to take on wrestling roles as a “jobber”. Jobbers are hired specifically to make the star of the show look good at the expense of themselves. How could Jimmy be satisfied in this position when others, including myself, were scrambling to make it to the top? Jimmy was working for something greater than himself: the vision of the company and creating the best experience possible for the fans. His opponent’s success was his success. He didn’t isolate success to the limited, tiny cage of his own person.
When you view success as a collective endeavor, it becomes more accessible. You’re no longer limited by you. You’re not driven by the fear of others getting ahead. Fear, unworthiness, and loneliness don’t become your reality. Why? Because when you integrate yourself as part of the pack, instead of trying to get ahead of the pack, you’re not only creating a cooperative environment with others, you’re living the principal of harmony.
So you see, vulnerability is strength. Every time Jimmy was a jobber getting mauled in the ring, he was actually a fierce-ass wolf in sheep’s clothing, pulling the pack together with selfless dedication. And what could be more powerful than keeping the pack together like a well-oiled machine?
In life, sometimes we’re jobbers and sometimes we’re the stars. Do you think there’d be superheroes if there weren’t any damsels and mansels to be saved? Now, when I say, “be the victim sometimes”, I don’t mean deliberately put yourself in a dangerous position. I’m just pointing out that being perceived as “weak” or letting others get ahead isn’t the end of the world. In fact, being the “fallen” one is quite noble. You might actually be co-creating a reality that’s more loving than you realize.
Remember when you fell down and grazed your knee as a kid, but your mom (or whomever) kissed it all better? You may have felt like a victim, but you were also a recipient of so much love.
In more ways than one, falling is priming yourself to receive the love of others. It’s allowing others to experience their superhero selves. Falling might mean stooping low, but only to become a pillar for something greater than yourself, like Jimmy.
Shape-shifting between Avatars
Look, I’m not always the 11th Warrior. Sometimes I’m just Jamin Olivencia, the person who used to have a learning disability and still needs to ask for help sometimes. But that too, is an avatar I hold close to my heart, because it draws power to me.
What do I mean by this? It’s because of my weaknesses and having to ask for help, that I get to enjoy the superpowers of others. Weaknesses can be like SOS signals that call forth other superheroes to join your league. By helping you, they come into their own powers too. Your weaknesses leave room for the co-creative act of building a better reality for everyone involved.
At various stages of our life’s journey, we might need to embrace multiple archetypes: wounders and healers, victims and saviors, you name it… Every avatar has a power and purpose of its own, even the fallen. So if that’s you right now, don’t despair. No matter how many avatars we morph into or grow out of, the person or soul creating each avatar remains the most powerful of all. Hence the title of this post: “Choose your Avatar. Find your Power”. More potent than the avatar itself, is the being behind it who chooses. The minute you choose, you step into your power as creator of your life.